Discovery

Explore Charleston’s Picturesque Parks

Historic downtown Charleston offers no shortage of Instagram-worthy spots, including a variety of picturesque parks and outdoor spaces. Grab some essentials, a blanket and indulge in a leisurely picnic lunch or dinner at one of Charleston’s prettiest parks.

Just a seven minute walk from Belmond Charleston Place, listen to the bells of St. Michaels from Washington Park, while surrounded by a beautiful gated garden. This has been a favorite gathering spot of Charlestonians for more than 300 years and features beautiful statues, from historic to whimsical.

Sit under the gentle mist of the Pineapple Fountain at Waterfront Park, which is just a twelve minute walk from the hotel. This city park features private alcoves, flower gardens, stone pathways, a pier with wooden swings and stunning views of Fort Sumter and Charleston harbor.

The Battery, one mile from the hotel, is located alongside the Charleston harbor. This beautiful shaded sanctuary filled with multiple monuments including Revolutionary and Civil War-era cannons and statues commemorating individuals notorious during the 18th century.

Relax under shaded trees and surround yourself with architecture dating back to the 19th century, just a ten minute walk from the hotel. The Cistern Yard is the core of the College of Charleston campus and home to national landmarks such as Randolph Hall. Built in 1828, this monument is one of the oldest buildings still in use in the U.S..

Enjoy the urban green space of Marion Square, a quick ten minute walk from the hotel, once used as a military marching ground before the Revolutionary War. This park, which hosts a Farmer’s Market on Saturdays, is the perfect spot to appreciate monuments such as the Holocaust memorial.

Amid the ruins of the old Charleston Museum and one mile from the hotel, Cannon Park provides a historic, stunning atmosphere. The remaining columns of the old museum create a beautiful focal point in this park designed by Frederic Law Olmstead, the designer of Central Park in New York City and the grounds at the Vanderbilt Mansion.

Staying at the hotel? Let us pack a picnic for you; A variety of menu options await. And please use the map below to guide you at your leisure.

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Arts & Culture, Discovery

A Symbol of Southern Hospitality

A leisurely stroll along any of the charming and historic streets of the Charleston peninsula lend the eye and ear many enchanting sights and sounds. Glances to the left and right can reveal hidden gardens filled with sweeping ivy and the gentle sound of bubbling fountains. And there is always the faint clip, clop of horse’s hooves on cobblestone streets. If you look closely enough, you may notice that one symbol in particular seems to pop up quite often, the pineapple. This has become ubiquitous to the Charleston area, but few know what the tiny emblem actually represents.

Sprinkled all over downtown, pineapples can be spotted on doors, atop gates, adorning houses and even on some pieces of jewelry. So what’s the deal with these little fruits, and why are Charlestonians so obsessed with them? It’s because the pineapple has historically served as a symbol of Southern hospitality. According to Levins.com, pineapples were often the main attraction of the large and decadent centerpieces commonly found at extravagant Southern dinner parties. The fruit therefore came to represent the warmth of friendship that was shared at gatherings, as well as the prestige of being in attendance. Some Charlestonians will also tell you that pineapples use to be given as presents on someone’s doorstep, as a sign of friendship. As architects and dignitaries began to pick up on the symbol and what it represented, pineapples were soon incorporated into many of the architectural details in Charleston.

The history of the pineapple explains the popularity of one of the most iconic, photographed spots in town. Visit the Pineapple fountain at Waterfront Park while sightseeing, or after a lovely dinner, as it’s a treat to see any time of day. If you visit the park during daylight hours you can snap a picture of the Charleston harbor behind the fountain, and as soon as the sun sets you can behold the pineapple lit up and glowing against a gorgeous starlight sky. The fountain is a landmark for many visiting the Charleston peninsula, and is a must-see experience.

One of the best ways to understand what the pineapple truly represents is to visit Charleston for yourself. The city is known for making visitors feel right at home with its hospitable charm, and the pineapple is just a token of this feeling. The next time you visit the Holy City, take some extra time to notice the cheery way that locals greet each other. Charlestonians pride themselves on being welcoming to all who visit, and that is one reason why those who have experienced Charleston say that it is unlike any other city. In fact, Charleston has been consistently ranked by Travel + Leisure as one of the friendliest cities in the United States.

Because of the unique history of the pineapple, visitors and locals alike have come to sport jewelry that features this Southern symbol. Whether it’s a commitment to being hospitable to all, or a charming reminder of time spent in the Holy City, people seem to love all that the pineapple represents. If you want to add a piece of pineapple jewelry to your collection, you won’t have to look too hard, just venture down King Street and visit the many boutiques which feature a variety of pineapple-inspired pieces. The charm pictured below can be purchased from Pandora in The Shops at Belmond Charleston Place.

The Palmetto Cafe at Belmond Charleston Place especially prides itself on being welcoming to guests who dine here. As a token of this sentiment, and as a delightful end to your delicious meal, guests are served a candied pineapple slice that has been dipped in milk chocolate. Hoping that each guest feels the warmth and hospitality of Charleston when they visit, this pineapple treat is the perfect end to an exceptional dining experience.

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